Safety in Puerto Rico

Like most countries, Puerto Rico has its safe places, and it's areas to avoid. In the major cities, like San Juan and Bayamon, petty crime is more prevalent. Due to the economic downturn, there has been an increase in crime statistics over the last couple of years. Locals say that the island is divided into the busy and dangerous east, and the laidback and peaceful west. Expats should be aware when walking around, as mugging has been known to happen in areas of the major cities. Walking around alone at night is not encouraged. 

The island does have gang activity, tied up in the drug trade (known as narcotráfico), and this is a huge factor in Puerto Rico. However any offset of violence from this usually affects locals rather than tourists. Most of the crime that occurs in the San Juan Metro Area is related to drug trade activity. 

Small towns on the island experience little-to-no crime, therefore expats travelling around should not be concerned about safety. The tourist zones are safe and there is a visible police presence. However, it is always recommended that expats keep their valuables on their person and watch their possessions when travelling. 

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